After complaining last year that Astrofest 2012 was too expensive because of its London location, I decided to visit this years International Astronomy Show (in association with Sky At Night magazine). A series of talks from some well known speakers at the more central location of Warwick Conference Centre.
Pity about the talk room, you couldn’t see a thing unless you were near the front. Even more annoying was having to pay for a general admission ticket after already having paid for the talks. Apparently you can’t enter the talks despite having paid for them without this general ticket as well. Bit poor really, this caught a few people out. Only managed to attend one of the two days.
- Beyond Galaxy Zoo – Amateur astronomy on a cloudy night by Chris Lintott. Chris is the main presenter of the Sky at Night and gave a passionate talk on discoveries behind the citizen science project of Galaxy Zoo. Unfortunately I was sat right at the back. Then the projection system didn’t work so Chris just did his whole presentation on the hoof instead with particular mention made on the possible hypotheses on Hanny’s Voorwerp.
- Albert Einstein – The day without yesterday by Dr Stuart Clark. The renowned astronomy journalist (The Guardian, New Scientist) on Albert Einstein, Edwin Hubble and George Lemaitre.
- Life in the Universe by Jerry Stone. Jerry is a space expert and has been giving lectures since 1969. Today’s talk is life elsewhere in the universe and how might we contact it. One thing is for sure “Either we are alone in the Universe or we are not. In either case, the answer boggles the mind.”
- Photographing the night sky by Nik Szymanek. Nik is a regular columnist in Astronomy Now magazine and talked about Astrophotography using a variety of techniques including CCD and DSLR cameras. Nik regularly travels to get some great images. I would love to have a job like this.
- Rocket propulsion by Ray Wilkinson. A talk and demonstration of rocket propulsion, rocket motors and how they work. Demonstrated burning rocket fuels followed by sending a small rocket into flight.